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A top Cuban official said the country is willing to increase the amount of deportees is currently receiving from the U.S., a top official told CBS News, while also blaming the country for the continued exodus from the island, immersed in an economic crisis.

Concretely, Cuban Deputy Foreign Minister Carlos Fernández de Cossio told the outlet that Cuba can accommodate more than one deportation flight a month, which is the current pace its receiving.

"We're open to having more," said the official, who was in Washington D.C. this week to take part in migration talks with the U.S. Over 5% of the Cuban population have left the country in the past years amid a serious economic crisis that includes regular blackouts and food and gas shortages.

Fernández de Cossio blamed Washington for the current malaise, saying the country is "aiming at destroying the Cuban economy" through the sanctions.

"You can speak about other factors, but if you have a consistent policy by the most powerful economy in the world to try to destroy the livelihood of a whole population, 11 million Cubans, it is logical to expect people, a segment of the population, to want to leave the country," he said.

The U.S., in contrast, has argued that the situation is a result of economic mismanagement, especially considering that sanctions have been in place for decades and the Cuban crisis has increased its decay over the past few years.

The Cuban government has been taking steps to addressing shortages, with President Miguel Díaz-Canel saying this month that the availability of subsidized food rations has been ensured. The country also received oil from Russia for the first time in years to address energy shortages.

Cuban officials this week urged their U.S. counterparts to ease sanctions as part of by-yearly meetings that resumed in 2022 after being suspended during the Trump presidency.

Fernandez de Cossio expressed his concern about a potential Trump return to the White House, given his more antagonistic approach to diplomacy with the island.

"Of course we're concerned if there are additional economic measures [against] Cuba, regardless of who wins the election. The Biden administration has very faithfully applied the policies put in place by the Trump administration and added some," he said. "So we would not [be] surprised they would do it. It would be unfair, and we believe it would be immoral, but we have to acknowledge that would happen and [it] gives us room for concern."

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